FORWARD BASE B

"Pay my troops no mind; they're just on a fact-finding mission."

The Mechanics of Status

Social status is a force enlightenment thinking fails to incorporate into its model of reality, like anything else that is not readily empirically validated.

Yet nothing humans do can be understood without understanding status.  Humans are very much like other social creatures.  Monkeys and dogs have status hierarchies similar to what people have, but we can never look at this objectively because the enlightenment religion insists humans are blank-slate rational agents separate from the rest of nature.

Status does 2 main things for people:

-Enables reproduction with desirable mates.

-Increases odds of survival.  When a famine hits, social status decides who dies first once there’s no longer enough food for everyone.

Penguins have a behavior in Antarctic winter storms where they cluster tightly and inividuals rotate from the center of the group to the edges and then back again when they get cold.

Humans are like penguins except we typically stay near wherever in the group we’re at.  The elite stay insulated in the center at all times while the losers live their whole lives on the fringe taking the full brunt of the Antarctic blizzard.  They are always one small emergency away from death and when some of them fall by the wayside, no one cares.

When we understand this core fact about the human condition.  All the fashions, class anxiety, shameless imitation, and sucking up is suddenly decoded.  We’re all descended from people who could beg the last crumbs off the bread merchant while the other poor loser with less appeal went hungry and died.

This is like the pressures exerted on domesticated dogs.  Every last one has the ability to look sad and shamelessly beg for scraps seared into its genetic code with a white-hot blowtorch.

We need only see how people move in herds when it comes to clothing, opinions, jobs, politics to understand how the group life has selected for human behavior.  Otherwise, no one would be willing to work 40+ hours a week wasting their lives on things they hate so they can have the house, car, and new clothing required for basic respectablity.

One of the most extraordinary things about human nature is a typical person who would be happy to just eat doritos and watch TV can easily be made to labor 12 hours a day if they think they can get social status that will keep them safe, make people like them, and get them laid.  Humans, like all living things, are lazy by nature but when they feel they must they toil like worker bees.

An instinctive need for status powerful enough to turn a couch potato into a workaholic is an obvious, low-effort lever of mass control that only secular societies are stupid enough to ignore.  As a result, parasites are free to hack the status system with no fear of punishment, ultimately bringing the whole structure down in flames once degenerate psychopaths crowd the top of the pyramid.

A functional society guards the avenues to status as jealously as the state guards its monopoly over violence.  High status people are models everyone else follows, especially in a modern society where the most famous people are known to everyone and god-like in their social influence.

Manipulating the status system is more effective and far less energetically expensive than direct coercion.  Most people do not have the level of abstraction to understand this form of control let alone begin to resist it.  Thus as the state is downstream of society, status shaming is upstream of state violence.

The successful ruler relies on shaming and social demotion 90% of the time with state coercion and books of laws only resolving outliers.  The silly secular society tries to reverse this ratio, with predictable results.  The establishment now tries to shame people back into obedience but that doesn’t work as well as it used to when most people are rootless individuals just living for a paycheck.

Recently, an angel was cast down from the upper middle class layer of Heaven called Silicon Valley.  Instead of transforming into a vile demon doomed to live in hell, James Damore found instead that he was rewarded with far more status and fame than Heaven ever offered him.

Many have pointed out that Damore will probably take a huge hit to his usual 300k-a-year salary, but money is valuable in relation to social status.
An upper middle class programmer makes more money than an upper prole policeman but is lower status in much of society, especially in the eyes of women.
Programmers are stereotyped as wimpy, socially awkward dweebs.  However they may be paid, they are hirelings with no power to speak of.  Although cops are disliked by many, they enjoy a certain prestige because of their power to administer controlled violence.

Status is linked to power and money alone is just one form of power that generally has to be used with other forms of influence.  As the election of Trump demonstrates, money is not enough when the status game has been lost.  Someone like Damore who has lost money but gained status, will probably be able to translate his influence into riches anyway.  Money is a proxy for resources, high-status people get first dibs on resources and mates in every society from hunter-gatherer bands to massive nation-states.

25 responses to “The Mechanics of Status

  1. Mycroft Jones August 24, 2017 at 5:53 am

    Bingo. Brilliant as always. And to think, from kindergarten all the way through school, the female teachers try to brainwash every male with the thought that status “doesn’t matter”. Because we are all equal. And people should like you “for who you are”.

    Now, in well run herds of humans, there IS a flow of people from the edges to the center, like with penguins. And honeybees are identical to penguins in this behavior also. Probably cows and sheep too, but I don’t have firsthand evidence. A society of humans that doesn’t allow some status mobility, is one that is either replenishing its ranks with invaders and outsiders, or is shrinking and dwindling.

    Or both.

    Quote from “The Jewish Revolutionary Spirit”:

    The arrangement is fairly straight forward and sketched out in rough form in Digby Baltzell’s 1964 book The Protestant Establishment, the point of which is to urge fellow WASPs to admit Jews to their exclusive clubs. According to Baltzell, a crisis in moral authority has developed in modern America largely because of the White-Anglo-Saxon-Protestant establishment’s unwillingness, or inability to share and improve its upper-class traditions by continuously absorbing talented and distinguished members of minority groups into its privileged ranks. … I have focused on the problem of anti-Semitism largely because the present position of the Jews in this country best illustrates the nature of the conflict between the forces of caste and aristocracy, which is my central theme (p. x).

    Baltzell prefers aristocracy, which is based on merit, over caste, which is another word for ethnicity, which he associates with obscurantism, convinced as he is that “these [i.e.. Whig] traditions are being threatened in our time by the divisive forces of racial and ethnic prejudice.” In The Protestant Establishment, Baltzell describes a schism in the WASP ruling class according to which the good guys are represented by Harvard and the bad guys by exclusive clubs like Union League and the Links. The good guys, according to Baltzell, are a small but growing minority of old stock aristocrats, following the Whig tradition in England, were willing to share their privileges with distinguished members of minority groups in order to maintain their traditional power and authority within the rails of some sort of new and heterogeneous establishment; they first became Progressives under Theodore Roosevelt, eventually supported Woodrow Wilson and finally joined and often led the Democratic Party during the Great Depression, and many of their sons were inspired by the aristocratic style of the New Frontier (p. xii).

    There is, of course, a downside flowing from this strategy, especially if it is viewed from the point of view of the ethnic groups that are getting colonized by it. In Das Kapital, Karl Marx wrote (and Baltzell quotes him) that “the more a ruling class is able to assimilate the most prominent men of the dominated classes, the more stable and dangerous its rule.” Following the same line of thought Paul M. Sweezy, himself a Harvard grad, criticizes Harvard’s strategy “as recruiters for the ruling class, sucking upwards the ablest elements of the lower classes and thus performing the double function of infusing new brains into the ruling class and weakening the political leadership of the working class” (Baltzell, p. 344).

    This, of course, is precisely the strategy which Baltzell is urging the WASP establishment to adopt vis a vis the Jews. “Today,” Baltzell writes, “when our steadily expanding postwar economy is demanding more and more leaders of ability and education , regardless of ethnic origins, an upper class which is still based on the caste criteria of old-stock Protestant origins is simply an unrepresentative anachronism. (The Protestant Establishment, p. 19).

    But even in urging it, Baltzell really never gets around to explaining the real downside of the Whig assimilationist paradigm. The real downside is that assimilation means extinction because the price of admission into the WASP ruling class is the adoption of WASP sexual mores, which means the use of contraception and abortion on their own offspring by the people who wish to assimilate. Baltzell never mentions the moral degeneracy of the WASP ruling class in his book, but that and the resultant lack of offspring is why they had to close this deal with the Jews in the first place. There simply weren’t enough Protestants around to staff the establishment they had created. In order to keep the empire running, the ruling class in the United States, like the ruling class in England a century before, had to turn to the Jews to run it with them and eventually for them. But in order to be admitted to the ruling class, the Jews had to assimilate, which meant that they had to adopt the sexual practices of their betters, which meant in the long run that their short-term success guaranteed their long-term extinction.

  2. Imperial Energy August 24, 2017 at 7:11 am

    Napoleon sincerely believed that men are motivated solely via fear and self-interest and part of that is status. Even if Napoleon is not completely correct, it does make for a useful, practical presumption.

  3. UlricKerensky August 24, 2017 at 9:50 am

    Using state coercion and codified law in a welfare state has the problem that you need to use an impersonal bureaucracy to enforce it, and bureaucracies have a habit of getting out of control, either by turning on the elites Janissary style, but usually by selecting for relentless bureaucrats who themselves provoke situations, like the British tax agents lost the 13 colonies, or the corrupt municipal fines system of suburban St.Louis, that laid the foundations for a political movement that has in turn weakened the foundations of the entire enforcement system.

  4. Sam J. August 24, 2017 at 3:42 pm

    Giovanni you write such great stuff. You have a a great gift of boiling down massively complicated subjects and illustrating them with easily understood ideas.

    I bet you would be good at writing advertising copy. That’s not meant to be a criticism. Think what a really, really good ad is worth to a company. it could make or break them.

    • Giovanni Dannato August 25, 2017 at 1:48 am

      My thanks to you, Mycroft, and others for your kind words and for stopping by. I am self-motivated but positive reinforcement really helps.
      I actually used copywriting once to demonstrate how even the quality of advertising has deteriorated in a mass culture.
      https://colonyofcommodus.wordpress.com/2015/10/28/mass-popularity-dilutes-quality/
      Is that an industry that’s hiring? I figure it’s a pretty specialized niche.

      In my first writing for the internet my style was similar to what I might have used in a college paper. Nobody read that stuff. Experience taught me that there is a high bar when anyone can go back and read great literature for free instead of me on the interwebz. Tightly condensing concepts and having a reasonable economy of language is required.
      I am a bit perplexed by the latest trend of 4,000 word essays with inscrutable titles and a breezy writing-style lifted from the pages of the New Yorker. On the internet, I next anything that doesn’t have some kind of direction or thesis within the first paragraph.

      • Sam J. August 25, 2017 at 6:01 pm

        Just for the hell of it you should learn Gimpshop (a free copy of Gimp drawing program with the interface tweaked to operate like Photoshop) and make a few ads for some companies. Maybe pick a few smaller or midsized companies. Send it to the President and see what happens. All you have to have is a few accounts and then you can say,”Well I did these guys” to bootstrap you up the ladder. Another thing would to try the local news and charge cheap prices until you move up. You can do 100% first class quality with consumer equipment and open source software. If it makes money then by the pro stuff to save time.

      • Giovanni Dannato August 26, 2017 at 10:56 pm

        I actually made fake advertisements for fun in high school in the early 2000s and posted them up around school first thing in the morning before the halls were crowded.
        pontius palm pilate

      • Sam J. August 27, 2017 at 2:44 pm

        It’s in your Blood!

  5. Augustina August 24, 2017 at 3:57 pm

    Spot on. Democracy doesn’t exist, because it is really just a status game. The people aren’t in charge in a democracy, the best status manipulators are. And who wins status games? The sort of people who can fool most of the people most of the time. Manipulators, sociopaths, and their various hangers-on. Flunkies, toadies, and apparatchiks soon follow as enforcers of the elite status game. Such as antifa. And HR departments.
    And you are completely correct in pointing out that most people don’t have the level of abstract thought to understand it, and therefore to resist it.

    • Sam J. August 26, 2017 at 9:35 pm

      “Democracy doesn’t exist, because it is really just a status game. The people aren’t in charge in a democracy, the best status manipulators are. And who wins status games? The sort of people who can fool most of the people most of the time. Manipulators, sociopaths, and their various hangers-on. …”

      “Democ­ra­cy is the worst form of gov­ern­ment, except for all the oth­ers”. All other forms of government have the same problems but it’s easier, not easy, but easier to change things in a Democracy. I personally believe in a qualified voter Republican Democracy which is the best form of government bar none.

      • Augustina August 27, 2017 at 7:28 pm

        Democracy is not a better form of government, because it is based on a lie. The people do not have any say. Elections are held as pressure release valves, so that people busy themselves in pointless efforts at change. The past few decades we have seen a massive change brought about, not by people power, but by the shadowy elites.

        We never had a say in illegal immigration, for instance, because we never needed to change the laws. It’s illegal, get it? But it still goes on, to the tune of millions of people invading our nation. Why? Because the elites want it so.

        Most of the massive social change, such as abortion and gay marriage were forced upon us by judicial fiat. Again, no democracy involved, and impossible to change.

        I could go on and on. This is a well understood fact. People have tried to come up with a name of the shadowy group of people who lead us, who actually make all the decisions. The Deep State. The Cathedral. A nexus of media, academia and education, global corporations, big finance, the military-industrial comples, NGO’s, foundations, think tanks, etc. We can’t even fully describe it. This means our politics are completely false.

        The whole R vs D show is kabuki theater. How obvious can that be now? Just in the past few years, the republicans have made a big show about repealing Obamacare. They did so several times. But only because they were secure in the knowledge that Obama would veto the bill. When they finally got a chance to repeal Obamacare with a president who would sign the bill, what did they do? Just now, in the past couple of weeks? They refused to pass it! Why are people still fooled by the kabuki theater of party politics?

        The only change that happens is the one our rulers and masters want. We live in a lie, because we do not know who are true rulers and masters are.

        Democracy does not exist. It never did.

  6. Tomas Nau August 25, 2017 at 1:03 am

    With this in mind, combined with genetic information it should be possible to find the genes that code for being the most “prosocial”/status-seeking and apply that information in certain ways.

    Just saying, who’d miss the most status-seeking? I wouldn’t.

    • Giovanni Dannato August 25, 2017 at 3:51 am

      As the author of a whole blog on being an introvert, I can’t disagree with you about the pathological status seekers.

      • Tomas Nau August 25, 2017 at 6:54 pm

        The status-seekers aren’t the only issue though, The “Head girl” types as Bruce Charlton named them in one of his essays on genius are another pressing Issue — basically your strongly hard-working, organization minded, above-average intellectually(your 115 IQ white collar prole type) and with enough drive to rise. Think Hillary Clinton or Angela Merkel for female examples.

        Going by how the economy increasingly rewards jumping through hoops, these are the only beneficiaries.

      • Giovanni Dannato August 26, 2017 at 1:52 pm

        One dystopian scenario that occurs to me actually is this very class of insufferable intellectually-middling busybodies breed/genetically engineer humanity to be universally like them. The Chinese would be a prime candidate to try something like this.
        In some sense, the alt-sphere might be said to be an alliance of upper working class elements around 100 IQ and 120+ IQ rejects who do not fit the “extracurricular”, “well-rounded” mentality. Naturally, these rejects are disproportionately from more tribal Celtic and Slavic ethnic groups because those breeds don’t have the “right” WASPy/Jewy temperament to be included in the culture of the upward classes however sharp their intellects may be. The working classes are mostly harmless by themselves. One of the fatal mistakes the rulers made is they refused to cut the right curve of unfashionable white ethnic groups into their racket. Now they are up against a rival intelligentsia that has everything to gain from their downfall.

      • UlricKerensky August 26, 2017 at 5:44 pm

        I’m not convinced America ever had the mechanisms to actually find and nature young talent, and if it did, it was because of the labor shortage of the late 50s to early 70s, Charles Murray seems to be stuck in that mindset. By the early 80s, Warren Buffett was complaining in commencement speeches that the best and brighest were going to Wall Street.

        Of course, that a son of a congressman who left the Ivies and left Wall Street seemed to mix Good Schools and “best and brightest”, well, I guess an amount of hyperbole is required for commencement speeches.

      • Sam J. August 26, 2017 at 9:42 pm

        “…Warren Buffett was complaining in commencement speeches that the best and brighest were going to Wall Street…”

        I see this as a consequence of the bankers and financiers having too much power. The Japanese moved a lot of their smart people into manufacturing, kept control of the bankers and their very top people went into the bureaucracy that controlled the whole mess. Mind you there are feedback loops and competing powers all throughout Japanese society. The thing that always astounded me is the Japanese even have a place for criminals. As long as their corruption is small, gambling, girls, that sort of thing they don’t bother them too much. If they get too big a massive, tsunami of cops descend on them. Japan is really fascinating.

      • Giovanni Dannato August 26, 2017 at 11:03 pm

        In a properly run system, organized crime can be kind of like one of those plecostomus fish that clean up the algae in aquariums saving the state some cleanup work in exchange for nourishment.
        Yakuza participated in giving aid during the Fukushima disaster. Seems it is possible to have a symbiotic relationship with a parallel institution.
        https://www.reuters.com/article/us-yakuza-idUSTRE72O6TF20110325

  7. Giovanni Dannato August 25, 2017 at 4:24 am

    Also: I just got done listening to an outstanding podcast on Malthusian pressures in human history and especially the 20th century, very relevant to this article and many others I have written.
    http://www.socialmatter.net/2017/05/19/myth-20th-century-episode-19-malthus-discontents-population-policy/

  8. ia August 26, 2017 at 1:28 am

    “Although cops are disliked by many, they enjoy a certain prestige because of their power to administer controlled violence.”

    Have you seen “Flaked” on Netflix? Happening now in Venice, CA, except more distilled and intense cuz of “art”. A study in Helotry and Dhimmitude.

    • Giovanni Dannato August 26, 2017 at 1:33 am

      I don’t have netflix. I spend most of my internet time reading and writing blogs. Could you explain it?

      • ia August 26, 2017 at 2:00 am

        It’s a series about 40 something recovering alcoholics Chip and Dennis. Chip is a stymied woodworker and Dennis seems to own property and sell wine. Both perfectly good-looking [white] alpha male types who possess the mark of Cain. They aren’t so much down and out but afflicted by an innate, incurable malaise. They look and even act perfectly fine. But their status is really terrible.

        There’s one scene near the last episode of the 2nd season where a black cop (all blacks are authority figures) barges into Dennis’s perfectly middle class house in fancy pants Venice with a drawn gun just to scare them. He then sits down at the breakfast table and starts eating their food. LOL. They just take it. He’s just shucking and jiving. This happens a lot. But there’s other bits of mockery.

        The visit to a spa with Dennis’s mother (Kristie Alley) is total humiliation for Dennis. His own mother makes a sexual advance and then he’s predictably humilated by a black attendent. Humiliation is the theme I suppose. White men humiliated by insane women and blacks. Basically, they’re helots.

        It rated 6.3 at IMDB and probably for good reason. It’s a kind of Baudelaire’s Fleur du Mal (Flowers of Evil) set in sunny California.

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